Ashkenazi to Blinken: Israel must strike Hamas ‘until peace and security restored’

Further senior Biden administration officials again speak with their Israeli counterparts, after US President Joe Biden urged Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to move toward “a significant de-escalation today on the path to a ceasefire” in the Gaza Strip.

Foreign Minister Gabi Ashkenazi says he had “another good conversation” with Secretary State Antony Blinke, thanking him for America’s “full backing” of Israel in the ongoing fighting against the Gaza-ruling Hamas terror group.

“I updated him on the rocket fire from the north,” Ashkenazi tweets, after several rockets were fired from Lebanon earlier today, setting off sirens in the Haifa area and other parts of northern Israel.

He adds: “I noted that Israel must continue to act against Hamas and the terrorist organizations in Gaza until peace and security are restored to the citizens of Israel.”

Ashkenazi says he also thanked Blinken “for his uncompromising support for Israel, including in the Security Council.”

He makes no mention of Biden’s comments to Netanyahu.

US National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan writes on Twitter that he too spoke again with Israel’s Meir Ben-Shabbat and “the Government of Egypt again today about the ongoing crisis.”

“The United States is engaged in intensive diplomacy and our efforts will continue,” he says.

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